Entry requirements

Undergraduate Degree

Bachelor’s degree in a S.T.E.M field such as Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Mathematics, Physics and other relevant Science and Engineering majors, from a university accredited or recognized by the UAE Ministry of Education. Students should have a minimum CGPA of 3.2 (on a 4.0 scale) or equivalent.

Applicants must provide their completed degree certificates and transcripts (in English) when submitting their application. Senior-level students can apply initially with a copy of their transcript and expected graduation letter and upon admission must submit official completed degree certificate and transcript. A degree attestation (for degrees from the UAE) or an equivalency certificate (for degrees acquired outside the UAE) should also be furnished within their first semester at the university.

English Language Proficiency

Each applicant has to show proof of English language ability by providing valid certificate copies of either of the following:

    • TOEFL iBT with a minimum overall score of 90
    • IELTS Academic with a minimum overall score of 6.5
    • EmSAT English with a minimum score of 1550

TOEFL iBT and IELTS Academic certificates are valid for two (2) years from the date of the exam while EmSAT results are valid for eighteen (18) months. Only standard versions (i.e, conducted at physical test centers) of the accepted English language proficiency exams will be considered.

Waiver requests from eligible applicants who are citizens (by passport or nationality) of UK, USA, Australia, and New Zealand who completed their studies from K-12 until Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree (if applicable) from those same countries will be processed. They need to submit notarized copies of their documents during the application stage and attested documents upon admission. Waiver decisions will be given within seven days after receiving all requirements.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE) - optional

General Test certificate is optional and submitting one will be considered a plus during the evaluation.

Statement of Purpose

In an 800-word essay, please explain why you would like to pursue a graduate degree at MBZUAI and include the following information:

    • Motivation for applying to the university
    • Personal and academic background and how it makes you suitable for the program you are applying for
    • Stand-out achievements, e.g., awards, distinction, etc.
    • Goals as a prospective student
    • Preferred career path and plans after graduation
    • Any other details that will support the application

Referee Recommendation

Applicants will be required to nominate referees who can recommend their application. MSc applicants should have a minimum of two (2) referees wherein one was a previous course instructor or faculty/research advisor and the other a previous work supervisor.

To avoid issues and delays in the provision of the recommendation, applicants have to inform their referees of their nomination beforehand and provide the latter's accurate information in the online application portal. Automated notifications will be sent out to the Referees upon application submission.

Entry Exam

Selected applicants will be invited to participate in an entry exam that will include questions related to the following topics:

    • Math: basic Math questions related to calculus, probability theory, linear algebra and optimisation

You are recommended to read about these topics especially on how they are related to Machine Learning. You can find tons of materials online. For instance, you can search “linear algebra for machine learning” on YouTube and get to see many video lectures. In addition, you can find courses on sites like Coursera, Udemy, and many others.

    • Machine Learning

MSc applicants: No previous background is needed

    • Programming

MSc applicants: You will be asked basic programming questions. Most questions are in Python but the specific language is not a problem since the questions are algorithmic rather than language-specific. Basic understanding about different data structures such as Arrays, Stacks, Queues, etc is important. In addition, It is also important to read about different programming algorithms such as sorting and searching algorithms, and complexity. You will be asked questions which require finding the output of a piece of code, finding the problem/error in a short code, and finding the code which performs a specific task.

Admission Interview

Months of entry


Course content

This scientific field studies how computers can be used to automatically understand and interpret visual imagery. It aims to mimic the astounding capabilities of human visual cortex using machine vision algorithms. It studies how an image is created, the geometry of the 3D world and high-level tasks such as object recognition, object detection, and tracking, image segmentation and action recognition. Computer vision has important applications in augmented/virtual reality, autonomous cars, service robots, biometrics and forensics, remote sensing and security and surveillance.

For full details see programme URL.

Fees and funding

UK students
International students

All admitted students on full-time basis are granted upon acceptance the privilege to complete their study with a full scholarship including 100% tuition fees, accommodation , health insurance and other benefits.

A monthly allowance will be provided to all admitted students during their study period at MBZUAI. However, and in order to maintain their scholarships, stipends and other benefits, students are expected to maintain high academic standing, comply with the University code of conduct and fulfill certain requirements during their study tenure.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    full time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification


AssessmentWhat kind of work will I be doing? (proportionally)
Written/ formal examinations20
Written coursework / continuous assessment65

Course contact details

James Brown